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LIVE REVIEWS

Enjoy Jazz 2018

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Enjoy Jazz International Festival for Jazz and More Heidelberg/Mannheim/Ludwigshafen October 13-15, 2018 During fall Enjoy Jazz is a major well-established event running through the metropolitan Rhine-Neckar-region (2, 4 million inhabitants) in southwestern Germany, now in its 20th year. Unlike the fast-forward conveyor belt of musical acts at many jazz festivals, whizzing past in a few crammed days,' Enjoy Jazz stretches over a period of six weeks in October and November. It means that there ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Way North: Fearless And Kind

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This roots jazz band is called Way North, presumably for their home base in Toronto. But a spin of their second recording, Fearless and Kind, says they could have tagged the quartet Way South, especially considering the opening tune, “Boll Weevil," and the two-part “Jelly Roll Morton Medley." Their music has a sort of Ornette Coleman vibe, if that free jazz pioneer/alto saxophonist had come out of New Orleans instead of Fort Worth, Texas. Part of that comes from the ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Jazz for all Ages

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Sonesta Resort Jazz for all Ages Hilton Head Island, SC November 2-5, 2018 It takes a few years for a jazz festival to define its character and purpose. Now, in its fifth year, the jazz festival on Hilton Head Island, SC, has achieved both goals. The character of the festival follows the musical ethos of the local jazz club, The Jazz Corner. Whether presenting the latest bands to be formed by alumni of Julliard ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Sherrie Maricle: 25th Anniversary Project

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To mark the DIVA Jazz Orchestra's twenty-fifth year as one of the world's leading jazz ensembles--male or female--drummer / music director Sherrie Maricle gave herself and eight members of the all-woman orchestra a homework assignment: to compose and arrange each of the ten numbers on the group's eleventh CD, the bright and exhilarating 25th Anniversary Project. Now that the task has been completed and the grades compiled, it should come as no surprise that everyone's work--not to ...

RADIO

Russ Johnson, Christian McBride and Noah Preminger

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Excellent recent albums from Russ Johnson and Christian McBride together with a focus on Noah Preminger lead a packed show with a mix a brand new releases and music from the archives. Playlist Russ Johnson, Rob Clearfield, Matt Ulery, Jon Deitemyer “Serpent Kane" from Headlands (Woolgathering Records) 00:00 Christian McBride “Walkin' Funny" from Christian McBride's New Jawn (Mack Avenue Records) 06:59 Bob Gluck “Spirit Unleashed" from Infinite Spirit Revisiting Music of the Mwandishi Band (FMR Records) 10:38 ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

MMO-Ensemble: Any Day Now

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MMO-Ensemble is the realization of Norwegian saxophonist/composer Martin Myhre Olsen's vision of a new 21st Century large improvising ensemble. The twelve-piece group (the largest version of the ensemble to date) includes horns, strings, a vocalist, and of course a rhythm section. The Ensemble's third project, Any Day Now is based upon texts by James Baldwin, Emily Dickinson and e.e. Cummings--which provide some of the structure of the music, as well as forming part of the collage (both spoken and sung). ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Sam Leak and Dan Tepfer: Adrift

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Adrift is an unusual recording featuring two pianos in an original work by Sam Leak. It's hard to neatly categorise since it presumably draws its influences from a variety of sources. It could be described as neo-classical, minimalist or chamber jazz but is most probably a mixture of all these elements since it assiduously resists any generic definition. Leak might have been influenced by a whole swathe of composers; the ghosts of Erik Satie, Arnold Schoenberg, Duke Ellington and perhaps ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Hot Heros: Folkjazz from Finland

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From the tarnished keys of his favorite old tenor sax, through the scaberous tones of the same instrument to the tangle of his extensive rusty beard, Sami Sippola epitomizes the essence of a free jazz artist. So needless to say the most recent of the releases featuring this well established Finnish musician is another tour de force of urgency and angst, but with a local twist. Accompanied by two very well-respected musicians from his own home town, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Baku Jazz Festival 2018

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Baku Jazz Festival Baku, Azerbaijan October 25-28, 2018 Stormy winds that you had to lean into to walk along the pavements had ripped the giant poster of the Baku Jazz Festival clean off the exterior wall of the Rotunda Jazz Club. Not for nothing is Baku nicknamed The City of Winds -a moniker derived from the ancient Persian name for the city, Bādkube, or 'pounding winds.' The cold Caspian Sea wind and the warm ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Joanna Pascale at Chris' Jazz Cafe

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Joanna Pascale Chris' Jazz Cafe Philadelphia, PA November 10, 2018 The content of this show came as a complete surprise to this reviewer. I expected vocalist Joanna Pascale, who is by now a Philadelphia legend, to sing a typical set of standards from the Great American Songbook. Instead, she blew everyone away with a set of Italian tunes that I usually hear in the background at a little coffee shop called Anthony's in South Philadelphia! ...